If you are like me, there is nothing like cooking a homemade pizza on the Big Green Egg with the family as the kids absolutely love helping! Pizza is also good with both marinara and pizza but what is the actual difference between the two and when should you use either the marinara or pizza sauce to get the best flavor for you and your guests?

What Is the Difference Between Pizza & Marinara Sauce?

What Is Marinara Sauce? (And Where Did It Originate)

Freshly prepared pasta or pizza sauce in bowl with wooden spoon. Tomatoes, olive oil, and herbs in background. Closeup with shallow dof. Selective focus on sauce in spoon.

Marinara sauce is usually made by starting out with sauteing garlic and onions in a pan. Once the onions turn tender then tomato and tomato sauce is then added to the garlic and onion. From here people tend to add other flavors such as peppers, herbs and sometimes even cumin. Once everything is simmered a little longer you then have yourself a nice marinara sauce that you can enjoy.

Both Sicily and Naples have been historically cited as the foundation of marinara sauce but it still could have been invented prior to the 16th century. The 16th century is around the time that the mention of tomatoes was first found.

With that being said it is definitely believed that marinara sauce was found prior to the 19th century. This is due to the fact that sailors named Marinaro, which is Italian for sailors, were the support system for trading at sea quite a bit prior to the 19th century. Many believe that marinara sauces were one of the main sources of food for the sailors because it didn’t spoil easily.

Others also believe marinara sauce was a prime food for when the sailors returned home. It is also believe that when the women saw the ships approaching shore they would scramble to make a hot fresh marinara for the returning sailors.

Either way, come the early 1900’s the sauce was known world wide. Now that you know all about marinara sauce don’t forget to try a fantastic recipe and make your own. If you are looking for a good marinara recipe I’d recommend checking out this video for an easy to make basic marinara sauce:

The Ingredients to Make This Basic Marinara Sauce Are:

  • 2 cups – Tomato Sauce
  • Basil Leaves – Chopped
  • 5 Cloves – Garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons – Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper (To Taste)

What is Pizza Sauce? (And Where Did It Originate)

Perfectly Cooked BGE Pizza

Pizza sauce is very similar as you can in fact use all the same ingredients that you do in marinara sauce. Pizza sauce is one of the main ingredients on pizza and the short and simple difference between marinara and pizza sauce is that pizza sauce isn’t precooked. Pizza sauce cooks on the pizza as the pizza cooks.

To make pizza sauce you can throw all the same ingredients into a blender and you have then made yourself a good pizza sauce that you can enjoy. Pizza sauce usually also has a more thick consistency than marinara sauce which is great as you don’t want the sauce to run off the dough. Pizza sauce is also more of a tomato based sauce. While both use tomatoes, pizza sauce doesn’t saute the tomatoes which allows for a more thick consistency then marinara.

Many give Raffaello Esposito from Naples the credit for making the first pizza but at the same time street vendors in Naples sold flatbread with toppings prior to Raffaele’s first pizza. History also says that around 1889 is when the Pizza Margherita was also first came to life. This was after Queen Margherita visited Raffaello and her made her a pizza topped with fresh tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil.

From here many Italians began to bring pizza with them to places like England, the US, Spain, France…and the rest was history as pizza can now be found everywhere. If you are looking for an excellent, easy homemade pizza sauce to try I’d recommend checking out this video:

The Ingredients to Make This Basic Pizza Sauce Are:

  • Crushed Tomatoes
  • Whole Peeled Tomatoes
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • White Granulated Sugar
  • Ground Black Pepper
  • Italian Seasoning (blend of herbs such as basil, oregano, rosemary & thyme)
  • Fennel Seeds
  • Oregano
  • Fresh Basil Leaves
  • Minced Onion
  • Fresh Garlic Cloves
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

In summary, and the short answer in what is the difference between pizza and marinara sauce is that pizza sauce isn’t precooked and the marinara sauce is. Other differences outside of the cooking process include the consistency and versatility of the sauce.

Pizza sauce is a base ingredient that is amplified by many other toppings while marinara sauce is loaded with flavor as it is the total package. Pizza sauce is formulated for just pizza and marinara sauce is widely used from pastas to meatloaf.

Have a better marinara or pizza sauce recipe that you love? I’d love to try them, don’t forget to post your favorite here!

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Author

I have a bachelor's degree in construction engineering. When I’m not constructing or remodeling X-Ray Rooms, Cardiovascular Labs, and Pharmacies...I’m at home with my wife, two daughters and a dog. Outside of family, I love grilling and barbequing on my Big Green Egg and working on projects around the house.

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